Quality of life, life expectancy, literacy, standard of living and migration in India

Quality of life, life expectancy, literacy, standard of living and migration in India

Human development—a comprehensive approach

  • Human development is a process of enlarging people’s choices. But human development is also the objective, so it is both a process and an outcome. Human development implies that people must influence the processes that shape their lives. In all this, economic growth is an important means to human development, but not the end.
  • Human development is the development of the people through building human capabilities, by the people through active participation in the processes that shape their lives and for the people by improving their lives.
  • It is broader than other approaches, such as the human resource approach, the basic needs approach and the human welfare approach

Measuring human development

  • The composite Human Development Index (HDI) integrates three basic dimensions of human development.
  • Life expectancy at birth reflects the ability to lead a long and healthy life.
  • Mean years of schooling and expected years of schooling reflect the ability to acquire knowledge. And gross national income per capita reflects the ability to achieve a decent standard of living.
  • To measure human development more comprehensively, the Human Development Report also presents four other composite indices.
  • The Inequality-adjusted HDI discounts the HDI according to the extent of inequality.
  • The Gender Development Index compares female and male HDI values.
  • The Gender Inequality Index highlights women’s empowerment. And the Multidimensional Poverty Index measures nonincome dimensions of poverty.

India’s Human Development Index 2016

  • India was ranked 131 in the 2016 Human Development Index (HDI) among the 188 countries.
  • India scored 0.624 and was placed in medium human development category.
  • The index was unveiled recently as part of the Human Development Report (HDR) 2016 titled Human Development for Everyone published by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • India related facts: India’s HDI value increased from 0.428 in 1990 to 0.624 in 2015. However, its average annual growth in HDI (1990-2015) was higher than that of other medium HDI countries.
  • Life expectancy at birth: In India, it has increased from 68 years to an average of 68.3 years — 69.9 years for women and 66.9 years for men.
  • Access to knowledge: India’s expected years of schooling remains at 11.7 years, while mean years of schooling increased from 5.4 to 6.3 years.
  • India’s Gross National Income (GNI) based on per capita purchasing power parity (PPP): It has risen from $5,497 to $5,663.
  • Gender Inequality Index (GII): India ranked 125 among 159 countries. Only 12.2% of Parliament seats are held by women. 8% of women above the age of 15 years are part of India’s labour force — compared to 79.1% men. The ratio of maternal mortality is 174 against every 100000 live births.
  • Inequality-adjusted Human Development Index (IHDI): It is difference between the HDI and IHDI, expressed as a percentage of the HDI, indicating the loss in human development due to inequality.
  • India’s HDI was pegged at 0.624, but its value falls 27.2% after being adjusted for inequalities, resulting in a HDI value of 0.455.
  • Life expectancy adjusted with inequalities between 2010 and 2015 fell 24%, resulting in a value of 0.565.
  • The percentage of inequality in education in 2015 was 39.4% or 0.324 and inequality in income 16.1% or 0.512.

Social Progress Index: India’s quality of life improves

  • The measurement of quality of life is critical to understand whether economic growth is fostering social development across the globe or not.
  • It is essential to ranks countries on the basis of government’s effectiveness at meeting basic human needs, at providing a foundation for well-being with basic education and environmental protection, and at creating opportunities for all citizens to make personal choices and reach their full potential.
  • This kind of framework is being used by the Social Progress Imperative to create the Social Progress Index. It is observed that the world incorporating 128 countries scores 64.85 on social progress.
  • It registers a 2.6 percent increase from 2014.
  • The performance is best in Basic Human Needs with a score of 89.62 followed by Foundations of Well-being and Opportunity.
  • The major factors that contribute to the improvements in social progress are increased access to information & communication and enhanced advanced education landscape. On the other hand, Personal Rights which includes measures of political rights and freedom of expression is declining in most countries.
  • A rapid deterioration of rights, especially in terms of falling political participation and worsening freedom of expression and assembly, points out that the choices of citizens are being threatened.
  • Also, the advancements in Personal Safety have been intangible. This is mainly due to the reverse changes in the homicide rate and violent crimes which some countries are experiencing.

Quality of life: Which is the best Indian city to live in?

  • One of the most difficult financial decisions one has to make in life is to decide the place where they would choose to stay. The location one chooses is influenced by a host of pros and cons. The cost of living, the availability of economic opportunities, the quality of life, education facilities, among others are some of the many deciding factors.
  • Mercer, the global human resources consulting firm, has released its 18th annual Quality of Living Survey, listing 2016 city rankings of best places to live in.
  • Mercer evaluated local living conditions in more than 440 cities surveyed worldwide according to 39 factors, grouped in 10 categories such as political and social environment, economic environment, socio-cultural environment, medical and health considerations, schools and education, public services and transportation, recreation, consumer goods, housing, and natural environment.
  • As per the Mercer ranking, Hyderabad has been ranked as the best city in India to stay in with a ranking of 139 out of 230 cities in the world.
  • Pune has been selected as the second best Indian city with a rank of 144.
  • Other Indian cities that found a place in the list are: Bangalore (145), Chennai (150), Mumbai (152), Kolkata (160), and New Delhi (161).

Literacy in India

  • The 15th official census in India was calculated in the year 2011. In a country like India, literacy is the main foundation for social and economic growth. When the British rule ended in India in the year 1947 the literacy rate was just 12%.
  • Over the years, India has changed socially, economically, and globally.
  • After the 2011 census, literacy rate India 2011 was found to be 74.04%.
  • Compared to the adult literacy rate here the youth literacy rate is about 9% higher. Though this seems like a very great accomplishment, it is still a matter of concern that still so many people in India cannot even read and write.
  • The numbers of children who do not get education especially in the rural areas are still high. Though the government has made a law that every child under the age of 14 should get free education, the problem of illiteracy is still at large.
  • Now, if we consider female literacy rate in India, then it is lower than the male literacy rate as many parents do not allow their female children to go to schools. They get married off at a young age instead.
  • Though child marriage has been lowered to very low levels, it still happens. Many families, especially in rural areas believe that having a male child is better than having a baby girl. So the male child gets all the benefits.
  • Today, the female literacy levels according to the Literacy Rate 2011 census are 65.46% where the male literacy rate is over 80%.
  • The literacy rate in India has always been a matter of concern but many NGO initiatives and government ads, campaigns and programs are being held to spread awareness amongst people about the importance of literacy. Also the government has made strict rules for female equality rights. India literacy rate has shown significant rise in the past 10 years.
  • Here are some facts about different states literacy rate, Kerala is the only state in India to have 100% literacy rate. It is followed by Goa, Tripura, Mizoram, Himachal Pradesh, and Maharashtra, Sikkim.
  • The lowest literacy rate in India is seen in the state of Bihar.
  • We also need to think why is the literacy rate is low here in India compared to other developed countries. Basically the population in India is very high. Being the 7th largest country its population stands 2nd in the world after China. There are over 1 billion people in India.
  • The number of schools and educational centers especially in rural areas is less. Even today many people are below the poverty line. Also people aren’t aware that children should get free education according to the law

Standard of living in India

  • Standard of living in India varies from state to state.
  • With one of the fastest growing economies in the world, clocked at a growth rate of 7.6% in 2015, India is on its way to becoming a large and globally important consumer economy.
  • According to Deutsche Bank Research, there are between 30 million and 300 million middle-class people in India. If current trends continue, India’s share of world GDP will significantly increase from 7.3 in 2016 to 8.5 percent of the world share by 2020.
  • In 2011, less than 22 percent of Indians lived under the global poverty line, nearly a 10 percent reduction from 29.8 percent just two years prior in 2009.
  • According to NCAER, India’s middle class population would be 267 million in 2016.
  • Further ahead, by 2025-26 the number of middle class households in India is likely to more than double from the 2015-16 levels to 113.8 million households or 547 million individuals.
  • Another estimate put the Indian middle class as numbering 475 million people by 2030.
  • It is estimated that average real wages will quadruple between 2013 and 2030.
  • The standard of living in India shows large disparity.
  • For example, there is widespread poverty in rural areas of India, where medical care tends to be very basic or unavailable, while cities boast of world class medical establishments. Similarly, the very latest machinery may be used in some construction projects, but many construction workers work without mechanisation in most projects.
  • However, a rural middle class is now emerging in India, with some rural areas seeing increasing prosperity. In general, the southern Indian state of Kerala ranks top for most of the indices.
  • In 2010, the per capita PPP-adjusted GDP for India was US$3,608.

Migration in India

  • One important facet of study on population is the study of migration arising out of various social, economic or political reasons.
  • For a large country like India, the study of movement of population in different parts of the country helps in understanding the dynamics of the society better.
  • At this junction in the economic development, in the country, especially when many states are undergoing faster economic development, particularly in areas, such as, manufacturing, information technology or service sectors, data migration profile of population has become more important.
  • When a person is enumerated in census at a different place than his / her place of birth, she / he is considered a migrant. This may be due to marriage, which is the most common reason for migration among females-or for work, what is the case as generally among males, etc.
  • It also happens that many return to their place of birth after staying out. To capture such movements of population census collect information on migration by last helps to understand the current migration scenario better.
  • In India, as per census 2001, about 307 million person have been reported as migration by place of birth. Out of them about 259 million (84.2%), migrated from on e part of the state to another, i.e., from one village or town to another village or town. 42 million (2%) from out side the country.
  • The data on migration by last residence in India as per Census 2001 shows that the total number of migrants has been 314 million. Out of these migrants by last residence, 268 million (85%) has been intra-state migrants, those who migrated from one are of the state to another.
  • 41 million (13%) were interstate migrants and 5.1 million (1.6%) migrated from out side of the country.

Why do people migrate?

  • People migrate for many different reasons. These reasons can be classified as economic, social, political or environmental:
  1. economic migration – moving to find work or follow a particular career path
  2. social migration – moving somewhere for a better quality of life or to be closer to family or friends
  3. political migration – moving to escape political persecution or war
  4. environmental causes of migration include natural disasters such as flooding
  • Some people choose to migrate, eg someone who moves to another country to enhance their career opportunities. Some people are forced to migrate, eg someone who moves due to war or famine.
  • A refugee is someone who has left their home and does not have a new home to go to. Often refugees do not carry many possessions with them and do not have a clear idea of where they may finally settle.

Push and pull factors of Migration

Push factors are the reasons why people leave an area. They include:

  1. lack of services
  2. lack of safety
  3. high crime
  4. crop failure
  5. drought
  6. flooding
  7. poverty
  8. war

Pull factors are the reasons why people move to a particular area. They include:

  1. higher employment
  2. more wealth
  3. better services
  4. good climate
  5. safer, less crime
  6. political stability
  7. more fertile land
  8. lower risk from natural hazards

Migration usually happens as a result of a combination of these push and pull factors.

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